I think I'm much less self confident today. I actually went through a quite painful period because of that thinking that I was completely hopeless. But I think that's something that we all go through at various times of our lives and it was quite a sustained thing with me.
As human beings, of course, we're all compromised and complex and contradictory and if a screenplay can express those contradictions within a character and if there's room for me to express them, that's a part I'd love to play, so much more than a character who is heroic and one-dimensional.
One of the positive aspects from my point of view in terms of lifestyle doing film is that I can say "Well, I'm now going to have three months where I'm just going to hang out and be with the family".
In a real fight, there ain't no time and you've got to use your wits. If someone were threatening the life of my child, then I'd be a good fighter. If somebody just wanted to steal my wallet, well, maybe I wouldn't worry about it so much.
When you're battling against the minds of the studios and the money that can go into promoting larger budget films, it's very hard for a very small-budget Australian film to get a look in. You can get critically acclaimed and go to various film festivals around the world, but that doesn't necessarily mean the majority of people are going to hear about it.
I generally find an affinity with a lot of the people I play and I suppose if I didn't feel an affinity for them then they wouldn't be particularly good performances.
I don't think I'll ever escape the fact that I don't belong anywhere in particular. I've often dreamed about going back to Nigeria, but that's a very romantic notion. It's a hideous country to go to in reality.
I guess I judge my films by how pleased I am with the work I do, so it's kind of on another level. If they do well at the box office, then that's great. Then I'm really pleased about that too.
Having agreed to play Elrond, I realized how much had to be worked out about this character: the idea of portraying someone who is immortal, for one thing; plus the fact he is noble, wise, powerful, good - and beautiful! I began to think that he was altogether impossible to play!
A lot of people have a fear of Shakespeare. Even actors do. People are like, "Oh, I won't go and see Shakespeare because the language is so hard," but it is. When you read it on the page, you go, "What?! What does that mean?!" If you go to a Shakespeare play and you've never been, you sit there and go, "I'm an idiot! I don't get it!"
The biggest challenge for me, as an actor, is to be informed, prepared and focused, at the same time. I had to just keep on working, prepping, reading and imagining, all the way through, but the biggest challenge is always to let go of all that and just be open to others. That's what we do, as actor. We play with each other and we stimulate each other, and we have to be prepared to be stimulated by the other. That's always my big challenge.